Comedy

Canadian YouTuber Julie Nolke just won the internet

Her funny viral video ‘Explaining the Pandemic to My Past Self’ sweeps the Webby Awards.

Posted: May 19, 2021

"And the Webby goes to... HOLY SH-T pinch me already, we won THREE Webbys!?!" - @JulieNolke on Instagram. (Samual Larson)

Toronto-based actor, writer and comedian Julie Nolke's viral YouTube video "Explaining The Pandemic To My Past Self" won this year's Webby Award for Best Individual Performance, against nominees such as The Daily Show's Trevor Noah and comedian Sam Morril.

The Webby's also presented Nolke with two Audience Choice Awards for best viral video and best writing.

WATCH: "What would happen if I tried to explain what's happening now to the January 2020 version of myself?"

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According to the Webby Awards, which took place Tuesday afternoon and celebrates the biggest Internet tastemakers, this year's honours were "dedicated to the outstanding individuals, organizations and projects that found creative and innovative ways to use the Internet to help the world stay connected during the COVID-19 pandemic."

Nolke's 5-word Webby acceptance speech was "Thanks for laughing with me," but we wanted more—so CBC Comedy asked Nolke about her reaction to the wins:

"I was flabbergasted, jaw-on-the-floor, uncontrollable-happy-dance excited. I have been watching The Webby Awards for years and dreamed about one day being considered for something so special. It was surreal to even be nominated, never mind to actually win!"

"Thank you all for your votes and endless support- you’ve made my dreams come true. I’d lick all your faces if it wasn’t for covid." - @Julienolke on Instagram. (Samual Larson)

Nolke, 30, moved from Calgary 12 years ago and graduated from York University's acting conservatory program in 2012. She started making YouTube videos in 2015 while working two jobs. Now, she has been named one of Youtube's Top Breakout Canadian Creators, and has acted in both television and film, with guest appearances on What We Do in the Shadows, Workin' Moms and TallBoyz

What's Nolke's biggest tip for 'winning' the internet? 

"Find a pandemic and then exploit it with comedy videos about said pandemic," jokes Nolke.  

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"But seriously, my tip is: don't try to win the internet," she says. 

"Instead, I'd say, focus on making something that makes you happy, has an original view point and is something that you can maintain over time."

Released in April of 2020, the first "Explaining the Pandemic to my Past Self" video now has over 19 million views, and turned into a five-part video series.

Nolke originally made the video to help process what was happening herself at the very beginning of the pandemic when there were so many unknowns about what was to come. 

"I couldn't believe that in a matter of weeks the entire world was completely turned upside down," she says. 

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"It was a scary situation, but it was also ridiculous, and the humour in it helped me digest it all. I guess a whole bunch of people felt the same way."

"It gave them permission to laugh during an incredibly challenging time," she says.  

Watch: Cuffing Season

 

What's next for Nolke? Earlier this year Kim's Convenience star Andrew Phung revealed that Nolke was a key part of his development writers' room for his new series for CBC, Run the Burbs.

 

Other than that, you can watch a new YouTube sketch on her channel every Thursday.